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Bristol M.1C Monoplane

 

 

Blue Max


Blue Max's 1/48 scale Bristol M.1C is available online at Squadron.com

 

S u m m a r y

Catalogue Number: BM115
Scale: 1/48
Contents and Media: 14 parts in short-run injection moulded styrene; 26 parts in pewter (white metal); 7 lengths of fine steel rod.
Price: USD$41.96 from Squadron.com
Review Type: First Look
Advantages: Good detail, nice fabric texture; high-quality plastic; delicately detailed pewter parts; otherwise neglected subject; interesting marking options; minimal rigging; attractive packaging and boxart.
Disadvantages: Some short-run attributes; modelling skills required; additional references will be helpful; no rigging diagram; enhancement of details will be required in the cockpit.
Recommendation: Recommended 

 

Reviewed by Brett Green

 

FirstLook

 

I bought my first Blue Max kit in 1991. It was the 1/48 scale Junkers J-9, and I was impressed initially by the lines of the chunky corrugated metal monoplane, then by the striking boxart. Indeed, the design of the packaging was, in my opinion, perhaps the most attractive I had seen. The combined effect was sufficient to help me part with the princely sum of $40 despite my lack of experience in WWI modelling.

Ten years down the track, Chris Gannon of Blue Max has released another chunky monoplane. The design of the packaging has lost none of its appeal in the ensuing decade, but the standard of the contents has made some progress.

Blue Max's 1/48 scale Bristol M1.C monoplane is an unashamedly limited run product.

 

 

The 14 plastic parts exhibit some flash, and the sprue attachment points to the smaller parts are relatively thick. However, the quality of the plastic is first-rate, the structural details such as access hatches, footstep and rigging attachment points are crisply rendered, and the surface texture (in particular the ribbing tape)  is very subtle and authentic. Rigging points are thoughtfully indicated by tiny indentations. The short-run origins of the kit are only betrayed by the slightly thick trailing edges on the wing, and fading rib tape detail on one section of the lower wing.

The fuselage is detailed on the outside and the inside. The inner sidewalls feature moulded-on structural detail. The wing is supplied as a full-span, single part with detail top and bottom, greatly simplifying assembly and alignment.. This is a major advance on earlier Blue Max efforts (although my Fokker did feature Chris Gannon's autograph - and fingerprints - on the lumpy inside surface of the fuselage!).

 

 

This brand remains committed to white metal detail parts in this age of resin. The 26 pewter parts are a joy to behold. The detail of the seat, the Vickers machine gun and the ten engine cylinders rivals resin, and the flexibility of the metal media will come in very handy for the wheel braces and the cockpit framework. All the cockpit components are white metal, including the small vertical instrument panel. A sharp knife will make short work of the thin flash surrounding most parts. Extra detail for the instruments should be added to the blank, raised dial faces.

Seven lengths of steel rod are supplied for the undercarriage braces/axle and the rigging tower on top of the fuselage. Some care will be required in gluing these parts.

Markings are supplied for two aircraft - a garishly striped trainer and an operational machine based in Salonika finished in PC10 and Azure Blue.

The instructions are brief. Seven small detail photos and a single exploded-view diagram are supplied. There is no rigging diagram. Blue Max clearly expects that its clients know what they are doing! By contrast, colouring notes are quite comprehensive, with cross references to Federal Standards, Methuen and Xtracolour provided. Even so, for a totally authentic kit I would recommend that the instructions' advice is followed by adding the Windsock Datafile on the Bristol M.1C to your reference collection.

 

.

Conclusion

 

It is pleasing to see such a significant but neglected WWI aircraft available in 1/48 scale.

Blue Max's 1/48 scale Bristol M.1C provides all the basic components to build an accurate and impressive model. Modelling skills will be required to clean-up, align and detail the parts, but a little extra effort should produce a showstopper.

Recommended to experienced WWI modellers.


Review and Images Copyright 2001 by Brett Green
Page Created 07 December, 2001
Last updated 22 July, 2003

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